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MUS 1112: Classical Guitar For Beginners
Designed to provide students with basic classical guitar playing techniques and performance.
Students will also be given basic skills in handling, maintenance and storage of a guitar as well
as handling of Rehearsals. Emphasis is on fundamentals: Reading music, posture, hand position,
fingering, rhythm, chord structure and progressions, and performance. The course is heavily
grounded in practical performance and theory is only to enhance the practice. Every student must
participate in the Departmental Performances as part of course work.
Requirement: Students will be required to acquire a personal instrument to enable them practice
on their own.
i. To develop correct sitting posture and appropriate hand positions
ii. To demonstrate proper care and maintenance of the guitar
iii. To develop an understanding of basic classical guitar playing skills and musical
To develop in students an appreciation and enjoyment of guitar music
v. To equip students with basic aural and sight singing skills
Course Outline
Topic 1:
Introduction to the classical Guitar
Anatomy of the Guitar: Parts and Components of Classical Guitars
Handling, Care, and Storage of the Instrument
Handling Rehearsals
Topic 2:
Basics in Guitar Playing
Guitar Fingerboard, Chord Charts and Finger Exercises
Guitar Tuning Methods: A Digital Tuner, 5th Position Method, and Harmonics
Guitar Tablature and Rhythmic Symbols
Topic 3:
Basic Guitar Playing Techniques
Open Chords Style
Scales Style
Strumming Style
Finger Picking Style
Topic 4:
Positions: First, Fifth, Seventh, and Twelfth
Open String and Fretted Note Identification
Topic 5:
Chromatic Scale Exercises: Simultaneous Coordination of the Right and Left
Topic 6:
15 Basic Chords and Various Strumming Patterns
Topic 7:
10 Essential Barre Chord Shapes and Inversions: Major and Minor
Topic 8:
Blues Progressions: I IV V, I IV II V, I IV VI II V Utilizing Major, 7th And 9th
Topic 9:
Rhythm: Playing Progressions in 4/4 Time
Topic 10:
Blues Pentatonic Scale: Foundation for Lead Playing
Topic 11:
Basic and Advance Blues Licks: Lead Patterns Utilizing the Minor Pentatonic
Topic 12:
Basic Lead Technique: Hammer On’s, Pull Off’s, Slides, and Note Bends
Topic 13:
Vibrato: The Proper Application
Topic 14:
Fundamentals of Theory
Reading Notes in First Position Treble Clef
Note Division in 4/4 Time
The 12 Tone System
Key Transposing
Learning Outcomes
i. Ability to tune, adapt the correct posture, and handle the guitar properly
ii. Ability to identify all the notes on the guitar fingerboard
iii. Ability to play basic left and right hand technique building exercises
Ability to play at least two sets of barre chords
v. Ability to hear and write down (aural skills) simple melodies
Ability to sight sing simple melodies
Methods of Teaching/Delivery
Homework, lecture, demonstration, individual instruction, tutorial
Modes of Assessment
Course work
Attendance and participation in class: 5%
Weekly performance assessment: 20%
Sight Singing: 5%
Aural assignment: 5%
Departmental Performances: 5%
Final examinations
Sight singing: 5%
Aural: 5%
Performance: 20%
Written: 30%
Selected Readings
i. Flores, Richard. 1999. 60 Classical Guitar Solos: Beginning to Intermediate.
ii. Leavitt, William G. 1998. A Modern Method For Guitar. Volume I. Berklee Press.
iii. Schmid, Will and Greg Koch. 2000. The Hal Leonard Guitar Method Book One. 2nd Ed.
Hal Leonard Publishing.